Here I Am

We generally attend the 6:00 p.m. Sunday Mass because that is the Mass at which the teen choir (which includes my daughter) sings. There is a song that is frequently sung at communion at that Mass that touches me deeply whenever I hear it. It is a Tom Booth song titled Here I Am. The words to the chorus are

Here I am, standing right beside you.
Here I am, do not be afraid.
Here I am, waiting like a lover.
I am here, here I am.

Whenever I hear the song, as I did at mass last night, the tears start to well up, as I hear the words touching a place deep in my soul. I kneel transfixed, as I hear God saying,

I am here in the face of every child.
I am here in every warm embrace.
I am here with tenderness and mercy.

I am here in the midst of every trial.
I am here in the face of despair.
I am here when pardoning your brother.

The music is sweet, but not extraordinarily fine. The words are simple and not particularly poetic. But still I’m touched. It think it must be because deep down we have such a great desire to know God is there for us no matter what…to know we are not alone. And so hearing God saying over and over again, I am here….I am here, provides a reassurance we so deperately need. (As I was reflecting on the words during my morning prayer, the image that came to mind was of holding my daughter when she was very young and had suffered some hurt and assuring her, “I’m here…Mommy’s here…I’m here.”) The tears, I realize, are tears of comfort and joy and I revel in the secure feeling that my God is by my side.